March 5, Friday Devotion
1 “Listen in silence before me, you lands beyond the sea. Bring your strongest arguments. Come now and speak. The court is ready for your case.
2 “Who has stirred up this king from the east, rightly calling him to God’s service? Who gives this man victory over many nations and permits him to trample their kings underfoot? With his sword, he reduces armies to dust. With his bow, he scatters them like chaff before the wind. 3 He chases them away and goes on safely, though he is walking over unfamiliar ground. 4 Who has done such mighty deeds, summoning each new generation from the beginning of time? It is I, the Lord, the First and the Last. I alone am he.”
At the end of chapter 39, we are told that God punishes Hezekiah by sending his offspring into exile. In Chapter 40, Israel is in exile. In these few verses, we are reminded that God orchestrated this conquering of Judah by Babylon - the king from the east. My take is that God is showing great pain that his chosen people have indulged themselves in pride. God allows for them to be destroyed with the emphasis that he is the one who gives and takes away their riches. Sometimes we forget about what we have because we look at what we have lost or what we want. Do you recognize that it is because of God we have what we have?
Lord, I know that I do not always appreciate the free gifts you have bestowed. May my life reflect the grace you have shown in my life to others who need that grace as well. Amen.